Space heaters are very easy to use.
the main points
- Electric space heaters are inexpensive to buy and can come with useful features like remote controls, timers, and oscillations.
- Natural gas is more expensive this winter due to inflation and the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
- You can also save by budgeting bills and by closing drafts that let cool air in and warm air out.
Winter is a difficult time of year for me – but I choose to live in a part of the country that has very cold winters. It’s really the only thing I don’t like about living here, but after a few years I’ve adapted and can make it through the winter while staying warm and not drained Bank account to pay for my heating. What is my secret? I own some space heaters and use them strategically throughout the winter.
Electric space heaters can be your best friend in the winter if you’re trying to save money. They’re inexpensive to buy – I bought mine for under $100 each, and you can buy smaller units for even less than that. Small ones meant for use in single rooms don’t draw much power either. They sometimes have elegant features; Mine came with remotes, timers, and an oscillation function. Space heaters make it incredibly easy to heat just one room at a time to provide comfort, which can save you money during the cold winter months. Here’s how.
Heating your entire home can be expensive
As reported by WGRZ in September 2022, winter heating costs are expected to increase by 50% from 2022 to 2023 due to several different factors. Inflation has of course made everything more expensive, and the conflict between Russia and Ukraine is also taking its toll. Russia is a major producer of natural gas for Europe, but since they are banned from selling it to the rest of Europe, the US exports more of its supplies abroad. So if you have natural gas heating (and you likely do, if you live in a cold place like me), keeping the heat setting lower will save you money.
How can you easily achieve and maintain lower overall temperatures at home? One great way is to install a programmable thermostat so you can set your home’s temperature and rely on technology to adjust it as needed. In addition, you can set different temperatures for different times of the day; It doesn’t make sense to heat your home to a comfortable lounging temperature if you’re at work all day, so you may choose to lower the temperature on weekdays while you’re outside.
But if you’re a renter like me, you may not have the option of installing a new thermostat, and your landlord may not want to go broke for it either. But a space heater can help you regulate the temperature in the room you’re actually in. The two rooms I spend most of my time in are my home office (I work from home) and my bedroom. I keep my central heating low and rely on a space heater in each of these rooms to keep them comfortable.
Space heater safety tips
It would be a remiss not to quickly give you some tips for safer space heater operation. If you are going to leave the room, definitely turn it off and consider unplugging it as well. Watch curious children and pets. Make sure your heater is set up at least a few feet away from flammable objects, and avoid plugging it into an extension cord. Don’t run the space heater all night (it’s worth buying one with a built-in timer). Finally, look for fireplaces that come with safety features. The two I have will actually close themselves if they get jostled or knocked.
Other ways to save
Turn down the heat
I keep my central heating at 64 degrees, but I know people who keep their center heating lower than this. You do want to make sure your pipes don’t freeze, though; Geary Insurance Agency recommends that consumers maintain a temperature of no more than 55°C in winter.
Seal cracks and openings where heat can escape
If you have a big gap under your door and can feel cold air coming in, you know warm air is coming out, too. Now is the time to break through the weather shields and strip the air. Many of the windows in my apartment are in disrepair, and as such, I hang clear plastic sheeting over them in the fall and leave them there until spring. In my father’s immortal words, “We don’t pay to heat the outside!”
Subscribe to budget bills
Once I lived in my current rent for a year, I was eligible for a budget billing plan through my utility company. The company set average costs for my year, and now I pay the same amount each month. Since I’ve also been taking steps to keep my costs down this past winter, the amount I pay per month is pretty reasonable. If budget billing is available to you, I recommend it. It’s great to be able to Create a monthly budget based on expected costs.
If you decide to purchase a space heater and use the other tips above, you can save money on your heating costs this winter and stay warmer at the same time. What do you not like about it?
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